Jun 21, 2017

BOC to become an international bank mobilizing more foreign remittances

Sri Lanka’s state owned banking giant, Bank of Ceylon (BOC) is to extend  its wings as an international bank with an ambitious plan of diverting its already increased banking business activities to a whole new global platform and bring more foreign remittances to the country, a top official of the bank said.

A fully fledged world banking system will be devised through the setting up of more BOC overseas branches in America, Canada, Malaysia, Australia, Japan, Switzerland , Cyprus, Singapore and Europe with the availability of funds. Another branch will be opened in Chennai , in addition to the existing one and exchange centres will be strengthened in the Middle East,
South Korea, Israel, Italy and France, and expand their overseas staff strength to mobilize inward remittances enhancement and extend the ATM network. BoC is exploring the possibilities of positioning its UK subsidiary in the Euro Zone countries, where a large number of Sri Lankan diaspora live, to mobilise deposits and inward remittances

There was US$ 4 billion of inward remittances coming to the country sometimes back and out of this, 47% amounting to around US$2 billion was handled by the BOC, while its Non Residential Foreign Currency(NRFC) deposits stood at US $800 million and the target is to increase it to US$ 1 billion .

In order to draw in more foreign remittances, Bank of Ceylon launched its NRFC Draw and Cash Remits competition, aimed at rewarding and encouraging savings of expatriate workers. This scheme would also provide the opportunity to increase foreign reserves in the country, an official said.

He also emphasized the importance of having adequate foreign reserves to fast track the growth of the economy in the new age of development of the country.